Thursday, February 12, 2009

Long,long,long day rebuilding NOLA...

Yolanda and Larry Searls in the sunshine of NOLA.

The forecast for Wednesday was for thunderstorms and heavy rain. Thank God the weatherman was wrong as the weather in NOLA was beautiful. After a run by the warehouse I went to the Searls' home to continue replacing interior doors. Yolanda is full of the stories of the storm, from displaced family members to lack of local hospitals. Her daughter is a nurse that worked at Charity Hospital in NOLA. After she and her family moved to TX she was hired by a hospital there. In TX she is making $25k more than she could in NOLA. With that difference of pay scale the daughter and her family will probably stay in TX. Mrs. Searls talked about how much she misses her children and grandchildren, but she realizes that opportunities are far more abundant out of NOLA.

Several times per month Yolanda drives over to the East New Orleans section of the parish. there she gives her time volunteering at a food bank. She goes because she realizes how blessed she is to be in her home and not in an empty neighborhood. In East New Orleans there are large neighborhoods, but may are like a ghost town. If you do find a house that is occupied, it could be a block or more before you will find another person. Older folks in this section of the parish are isolated and alone. Yolanda said that many of the seniors come to the food bank not for the food, but for the company and conversation. many do not take food, but sit and enjoy the company of Yolanda Searls. Even with her struggles, she is looking to help and bless others.

Larry came home around 2:30pm and I was met with a big hug and a joyful smile. From there I drove to see Mrs. Phillip on Law St. Not working there this week, lunches have been fruit and water;( I am not working there this week as I am working alone. I wanted to check on her and get a hug and smile from her joyful spirit. Today I will pick up an assistant at the airport and Louis will return the first of next week.

The afternoon and early evening were spent with Mrs. Holloway and moving her house forward.
I will be calling her insurance adjuster today attempting to figure out what documentation we will need for her to get the check for over $17k that the company "might"pay if we can meet their requirements. Pray for wisdom and patience as I attempt to help her complete this house.

Also pray for the team of 17 men from Jacksonville, FL. They have been fighting sickness and yesterday one of the gentlemen cut off his thumb to the first knuckle with a table saw. yes, volunteering to rebuild NOLA can be dangerous!

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